Book Cover


1980s & '90s

Lara Reznik

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SUMMER 1977: As the Son of Sam terrorizes Manhattan, a Jewish sociologist from Long Island takes a romantic gamble and follows a handsome Latino doctor to rural New Mexico where their love is tested by his surly mama, gorgeous ex-girlfriend, a Son of Sam copycat, and cultural differences.



Short Summary

As the Son of Sam and a heat wave plague NYC, Laila Levin, a Jewish sociologist from Long Island, meets Dr. Eduardo Quintana a native New Mexican while giving a speech on the epidemic problem of teenage pregnancies. Within days, their mutual passion is so intense it stuns them both.

After surviving culture shock of life in rural New Mexico, blatant rejection from Eduardo's mother, and the return of Eduardo's drop-dead gorgeous girlfriend from a failed career in Hollywood, Laila and Eduardo have a hilarious wedding in Santa Fe where a shocking family secret is revealed


New York City, A ranch in New Mexico

Based on a True Story


Plot - Premise


Plot - Other Elements

Happy Ending,Meaningful Message,Twist,Philosophical Questions

Mature Audience Themes

Information not completed

Main Character Details

Name: Laila Levin

Age: 28

Gender: Female

Role: Protagonist

Key Traits: Adventurous,Modest,Charming,Complex,Faithful,Sexy,Funny,Romantic,Sophisticated,Naive,Educated,Honorable,Clumsy

Additional Character Details


Age: 35

Gender: Male

Role: Emotional

Key Traits: Adventurous,Masculine,Modest,Aggressive,Charming,Complex,Decisive,Blunt,Sexy,Empathetic,Engaging,Faithful,Gracious,Heartthrob,Educated,Heroic,Honorable,Leader,Unapologetic,Seductive,Romantic,Skillful

Additional Character Details


Age: 35

Gender: Female

Role: antagonist

Key Traits: Aspiring,Adventurous,Aggressive,Sexy,Crazy,Narcisstic,Seductive,Manipulative,Unapologetic,Insecure,Charming,Desperate

Additional Character Details

Name: DAVE

Age: 40

Gender: Male

Role: antagonist

Key Traits: Underdog,Villainous,Clumsy,Crazy,Criminal,Desperate,Uneducated,Secretive,Lone Wolf

Development Pitch

Two cultures collide when a Jewish woman from New York falls in love with a Latino doctor from rural New Mexico. Set in the summer of 1977 as the Son of Sam terrorizes New York City, Laila Levin, meets the dashing Dr. Eduardo Quintana while presenting post doctorate research on the epidemic problem of U.S. teenage pregnancies. What begins as a playful flirtation, propels into a more serious relationship. Their mutual passion is so intense, that after a brief courtship, Eduardo invites her to accompany him to his family ranch in New Mexico where he plans to open a practice. The rural town has one of the highest pregnancy rates in North America, perfect for Laila's research. Once in New Mexico, their relationship is tested by Eduardo’s controlling mother who blatantly rejects Laila, his drop dead gorgeous ex-girlfriend who recently returned after a walk on the dark side of Hollywood, and a Son of Sam copycat who has stalked Laila cross-country. The vegetarian Laila experiences culture shock at a matanza, a family gathering where they roast a pig. In the midst of the pandemonium that results, a shocking family secret is revealed and the question becomes can their relationship survive the fierce clash of cultures, the murderous intentions of a Son of Sam copycat, Eduardo’s mother’s rejection, and their own uncertainties about the upheaval that their unison will have on their lives. Bagels & Salsa is loosely based on the author's real life experiences.

About The Author

A native New Yorker, Lara Reznik escaped to New Mexico in the 1970s in a Karmann Ghia that she jump-started cross-country. As an English major at the University of New Mexico, Reznik studied under esteemed authors Rudolfo Anaya and Tony Hillerman. In 2012, Lara published The Girl From Long Guyland, a psychological suspense novel. Following Guyland's breakout success, Lara retired from her day job as an I.T. manager to write full time. Reznik's second novel, The M&M Boys, followed in 2016. Bagels &Salsa, evolved from a screenplay Reznik wrote in 2001 that was a finalist in a Writer’s Digest, Austin Heart of Film and Southwest Writers screenwriting contests. The novel won second place in the Texas Writers’ League annual fiction contest in 2017. Reznik has also optioned two screenplays, to Hollywood producers. Currently, Lara lives in Austin, Texas with her husband and two mini-Aussies and is busy writing her fourth novel, Dance of Deception.

Target Audiences

Age: 18-34,35-54,55+

Target Gender: Female Leaning

Group Specific

Information not completed

Publishing Details

Status: Yes: self-published


Year Published: 2018

Hard Copy Available